Furor poeticus is Latin for ‘poetic frenzy’. The term goes back to the Ancient Greeks and refers to a poet’s being transported to a state in which he would channel the gods’ thoughts and feelings. During his Trinity College days, with some humour, Edmund Burke borrowed the term to describe his youthful fixation on poetry and history. He called those phases his furor poeticus and furor historicus.
The idea of a frenzied psychological state came to mind when I read a report on msn.com with the headline: Bureaucrats refuse to reveal Abbott’s alcohol preferences despite FOI request. It seems that all this year Labor Senator Penny Wong has been after an account of the brands and types of alcohol Tony Abbott drank while prime minister. After the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet was forced by a Freedom of Information request to come up with a pile of receipts, Wong’s desired information was blacked out. She ‘likened this lack of transparency to an episode of ABC comedy Utopia.’ Continue reading